According to TechCrunch, Spotify is testing a new TikTok-style video feed in its beta iOS app that shows fullscreen video clips as songs are played. Chris Messina was the first to notice the function, and he shared a video of it in action. The video feed is accessible from a new fourth tab in the navigation bar called “Discover” when it is available. As you go through the stream, you may like individual tunes, and there’s also a three-dot menu symbol that brings up options for each song.
Chris Messina was the first to notice the new update, tweeting a video of the Discover feature in action. It’s a “pared-down version” of a TikTok-style music video feed, according to him.
Messina discovered the feature in Spotify’s TestFlight release (an iOS beta version), where tapping a new icon in the navigation toolbar takes you straight to the video feed. You may then move around the feed by swiping up and down, similar to how you would on TikTok. He points out that in addition to tapping the heart to enjoy songs, you can also tap the three-dot menu to see the usual song information sheet.
Messina claimed that the functionality might be based on Spotify’s existing Canvas format.
Canvas, which was widely released in 2019, allows artists to make videos to complement their music on the Spotify app. Users had mixed reactions to the feature, with some claiming that when listening to music, they preferred to see only the static album art and found the movie and its continuous imagery distracting. Others, on the other hand, said they enjoyed it. Users are more likely to continue streaming, share tunes, or save tracks when they see a Canvas, according to Spotify.
We can confirm that the videos playing in the vertical feed are the artists’ existing Canvas videos based on the video Messina supplied and others we watched. However, Spotify refused to confirm this to us.
The test comes as Netflix is experimenting with a similar design on its iOS app to help customers find new things to watch. Its new “Kids Clips” feature, which follows the launch of a similar “Fast Laughs” feed earlier this year, offers video from its kid-friendly programming. Even non-social media platforms are increasingly interested in leveraging TikTok’s structure to assist users engage with their own services as TikTok’s engagement hours rise.
Spotify acknowledged the test in a statement to TechCrunch, but declined to say whether or when it would be expanded. “At Spotify, we routinely conduct a number of tests in an effort to improve our user experience,” a spokesperson said. “Some of those tests end up paving the way for our broader user experience and others serve only as an important learning. We don’t have any further news to share at this time.”
The discovery of Spotify’s latest test comes almost a year to the day after the service was experimenting with using a Snapchat-style stories feature alongside some of its playlists, which is an interesting hint of how formats are changing. Who knows what will be fashionable in a year’s time?
While top social networks such as Instagram (Reels), Snapchat (Spotlight), YouTube (Shorts), and Pinterest (Idea Pins) have adopted the TikTok format, it’s also proven to be a perfect format for content discovery.